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A glimmer of hope? Rate of COVID-19 hospitilizations in Michigan looks to be slowing

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"Hospital Room" by Kyle Taylor, Dream It. Do It. is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
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The number of people hospitalized with the coronavirus continues to climb in Michigan. But the number isn’t rising as fast as it was a few weeks ago.

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Hope.

A word that’s been in short supply among health care workers in Michigan recently.

But in the latest hospital numbers, there’s some sign of it.

Joshua Kooistra is chief medical officer at Spectrum Health West Michigan, where hospitalizations have declined since a peak 10 days ago.

"My hope is that the increased social distancing measures, and some of the restrictions that have been put in place, have led to decreased hospitalizations," said Kooistra. "That’s a hunch, I can’t prove it, but that is my hope."

Kooistra says Spectrum hospitals are still very busy, and there’s been no decline in coronavirus patients in the critical care units.

And he says the hospital is expecting numbers could rise again if people gather for the holidays.

Dustin Dwyer is a reporter for a new project at Michigan Radio that will look at improving economic opportunities for low-income children. Previously, he worked as an online journalist for Changing Gears, as a freelance reporter and as Michigan Radio's West Michigan Reporter. Before he joined Michigan Radio, Dustin interned at NPR's Talk of the Nation, wrote freelance stories for The Jackson Citizen-Patriot and completed a Reporting & Writing Fellowship at the Poynter Institute.